simon norris's comments
Porrit J is right on the money in his analysis of our profession's response to climate change. All strength to his albow. I take the view no building should be constructed or altered that does not conform to the latest advice from those who know.
Simon norris architect.
Michael Berkowitz analysis may be skewed in the case of British cities, because we here have an adulation of property and ownership. This adulation spreads to estate agents and to TV progrqmmes. It has been in place for hundreds of years, since the days of Magna Carts, when the Barons used their freshly gained power to grab all the land. I think this may be the root of all evil, filtering down to all those who would do their dirty work.
If M. Berkowicz can put this right, he'll habe done us a great service.
What a wow of a competition! All competitors are to be congratulated on their efforts of the imagination.
most grateful for the commentry on Thamesmead - which I have never visited: it has always been regarded as a soggy version of hell., where dwell people from another world, Farage country.
1. Are we to understand that there will be no stndards required for Flats?
2. Are the providers of the standards not aware of the benefit of apartments in respect numbers of people housed?
3. And of the consequent reduction in road traffic and and health of the occupants?
4. And that the flats/apartments can well be built to 5 stories which will allow of flexibiliy in the layout of apartments.
5 and that the roofs will become gardens for the pleasure of all the apartment dwellers. Simon Norris RIBA
Q1 will the new space standards to enhance flexibility in the plans of house builders? I doubt it, probably lead to even more utterly boring developments..
Q2 what we need is less housebuilding and more apartments. Apartments are arguably better at employing flexibility, so that over time the buildings can accommodate more people.
Q3 Apartments can be built taller - say 5 stories - and have a roof terrace for the benefit of the occupants of the flats.
etc etc etc.
this is the most heartening news yet on the subject of housing for the many. The present situation is driven by two factors: 1. the propensity of housebuilders to build diddy dwellings in the countryside, each with their carparking space and a garage, detached from any other dwelling. Lovely.
2. everyman must have a car, at least one, and that gives the owner the divine right to complain about the drive to the office, and the inadequacy of the road system carparking etc.
Consider the Cities. In Oxford we have a large supply of slum dwellings, which over the years have been tittivated and fitted with expensive kitchens and bathrooms. The owners complain about everything and are steadfast in objecting to any improvement.that may threaten their grip on the value of their property.
I have come to the conclusion that the most valuable commodity in our cities is land, and that any scheme that does not realise about X 5 dwelling numbers should be thrown out. Local authorities should develop all their older housing estates with 5-storey apartment blocks,
flat roofs devoted to gardens and general fun items. No one should assume the automatic right to have a car, all citizens will be obliged to walk to the tram stop.
This may go some way to reversing the despoliation of the countryside'
until the Govt grasps the nettle that 'the market' is not the be all and end all of the housing supply chain, there will be nothing but an endless repetition of past stupidities.
the central issue is land use: the 'market' has it that what every custiomer wants is a little diddy house with a pitched roof and a garage and a driveway and loads of road to enable the purchaser to drive to everywhere.
And they can't have it! not in any sensible and responsible society. Instead of being held to ransome by the Planners and their cow-towing to the cinservation lobby they should be redeveloping the old slums and getting far more people living in the cities in apartmnt blocks. Out with the slate tented roofs, in with the roof gardens and the solar panels.
Simon Norris Architect OXFORD